Patrick Bieleny Explains How to Set Up a Home Office for Increased Productivity

Working from home has become the new normal for employers and employees, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. For those not used to creating a work space at home, doing so can be tricky.

Patrick Bieleny is a respected real estate investor and entrepreneur in Calgary, Alberta, with a specialty for flipping houses. He explains how to set up a home office for increased productivity.

Home Office Setup

First, identify a workspace, ideally a room located in a quiet part of the home. An ideal office space is noise-free and separate from main living areas.

One’s work area should be comfortable. If one prefers to stand while working, they should consider a standing desk or converter. When sitting for long periods, an ergonomically correct chair will help one avoid strain or injury. Computer monitors should also be set up to align the top of the screen to eye level. This arrangement will help keep the neck straight and encourage better posture.

Lighting is not only important to reduce eye strain, but it can also help improve one’s mood. If natural light is not an option, the employee should purchase a floor or desk lamp. Ideally, fluorescent lighting should be avoided, instead opting for select warm-hued bulbs or bulbs and lamps that replicate natural light.

Clutter is distracting and increases stress, notes Patrick Bieleny. Sufficient storage is essential to keeping clutter to a minimum. Also, drawer organizers help keep desk drawers from becoming messy and a wall organizer or pegboard can help maintain general order around the workspace. Additionally, a wireless keyboard and mouse keeps the workspace looking sleek and unburdened by excess cables.

Make the Space Enjoyable

An enjoyable workspace is a productive workspace. That’s why many home offices include carefully placed inspirational art, motivational quotes, or vision boards on the walls. One should remove all items that do not support productivity, such as gaming systems or entertainment centres. Adding a couple houseplants will improve the air quality and make the room more pleasant.

Many people will paint the walls a more desirable color in their workspace. White tends to make the room feel sterile and in a room without windows, it can actually make the room look darker, says Patrick Bieleny. Different colors affect people differently. For example, many feel that blue has a more calming effect and that green is best for creative thinking.

Tiny Space

Not everyone is able to dedicate a room as their home office. If it’s not possible to pick a room removed from the main living areas, noise-cancelling headphones or earplugs can minimize distractions.

Floating desks or foldout desks are great for saving floor space. Mirrors help to create the illusion of a bigger open space and reflect light to brighten a room.

Patrick Bieleny on Creating Boundaries for Work-Life Balance

While working from home can help one achieve a better work-life balance, there are also new challenges. One should set clear boundaries for themselves, their family, and/or their roommates to keep their personal life and work life separate.

Simply put, home workers should set a firm work schedule. Working long hours can cause burnout and negatively influence sleeping habits and health. One should establish a time frame that works and stick with it, says Patrick Bieleny.

Founder of PB & Co. Houses. Eastern European entrepreneur living in Calgary, Alberta.